Just Don't Call Me Stupid

by Erika Walsh | 11/9/04 6:00am

To the Editor:

I couldn't agree more with Austine Kuder's message ("Keep an Open Mind," The Dartmouth, November 8). I am similarly troubled by the widespread, dare I say oppressive, political commentary being thrown around on this campus recently. As a self-described moderate, I am very open to hearing both sides of any debate, political or otherwise. As Kuder correctly assesses, however, Dartmouth's so-called diversity-embracing community has not been so open-minded as of late.

I was genuinely surprised by some of the ignorant, and truly unkind, words escaping the mouths of my fellow students: "I would never want to live in the south because they all voted for Bush." Oh, or how about, "conservatives are so stupid." Even better: "Only uneducated people vote Republican."

Although I attribute these comments to frustration and an overwhelming sense of disappointment, is it necessary to load such opinions with derogatory sentiment? Undoubtedly, every individual has a right to his or her own opinion. More importantly, however, every individual should be respected. By all means, whether you are a die-hard Kerry fan, or a through-and-through Bush devotee, share your voice. But please, just don't call me stupid.